St., Balthasar, Cyprian, Casper, Melchior, Magi, Christian
St Balthasar. According to the Tradition of the Catholic Church, the three Kings (Wise men) mentioned in Matthew 2:1-9 represent the three ages and three "radical types" of man, each wise man further representing one of Noah's descendants (Sem, Cham, and Japheth).
According to the Tradition of the Catholic Church, there truly were three Wise Men: St. Caspar, St. Melchior, and St. Balthasar. St. Casper is traditionally described as young, beardless and the descendant of Ham who brought frankincense to the Child Christ.
St. Melchior was old and had a white-colored beard; he was the descendant of Sam who brought gold to Jesus. And finally, St. Balthasar was a bearded, black descendant of Japheth, in the prime of his life, who brought myrrh. Top left St Balthasar and below right the Magi,s painting.
These are all related from the words of the Venerable Bede. As Fish Eaters states, "Tradition also has it that the kings were baptized by St. Thomas, and they are considered Saints of the Church. Though their feasts aren't celebrated liturgically, the dates given for them in the martyrology are as follows: St. Caspar on 1 January; St. Melchior on 6 January; and St. Balthasar on 11 January."
The Magi were a priestly caste of ancient Persian Zoroastrianism and were revered by classic authors as wise men.
It was their alleged power over demons gave rise to the word "magic." Magi comes from Middle English magi, from Latin magi, pl. of magus (meaning sorcerer), from Greek magos, from Old Persian magus.
In Christian culture, the Magi were men who came, bearing gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh, to adore the newborn Jesus. They were guided by the Star of Bethlehem. Their number was not identified in the Gospel of Matthew, but Christian tradition has set their number as three, called them kings, and named them Caspar or Gaspar, Melchior, and Balthazar. The Feast of Epiphany, January 6th, commemorates their visit. Their coming was foretold. "The kings of Tarshish and the Isles shall offer gifts, the kings of Arabia and Seba shall bring tribute. All kings shall pay Him homage, all nations shall serve Him" (72:10-11).
Isaiah also prophesied the gifts: "Caravans of camels shall fill you, dromedaries from Midian and Ephah; all from Sheba shall come bearing gold and frankincense, and proclaiming the praises of the Lord" (Isaiah 60:6).
ST.CYPRIAN 200 to 258 A.D. He was a native of Carthage. He was a leading pagan lawyer and teacher. He was converted to Christianity in 246 and soon became a leading author of many books and a scholar on the Bible. he was elected Bishop of Carthage before having to flee persecution. He returned after being severely criticized for his departure. Cyprian was involved in many controversies and came into conflict with the Pope of the time. He was arrested and beheaded for refusing to sacrifice to pagan gods. He is considered a leading pioneer of Latin Christian literature.
St., Caesarius, Callistratus, Candida, Victor, Nicholas, Patrick
ST. CAESARIUS. Legend relates that Caesarius was a Deacon from Sudan who on visiting Italy protested against the pagan custom of sacrificing youths to the deity Apollo.
He was seized and kept imprisoned for almost two years before being placed in a sack with a priest called Julian and thrown into the Sea.
ST. CALLISTRATUS Died 300 A.D. Callistratus was a Theban Soldier who along with fifty of his companions were put to death in Constantinople for their beliefs. They were placed in individual sacks and thrown into the sea.
ST.CANDIDA Died 300 A.D. Candida was virgin believer from Carthage who was martyred by Maximian Herculeus.He is one of the most prolific thinkers and certainly one of the most influential. Top left modern icon of "the four Cappadocians" St. Basil, Gregory of Nyssa, Gregory of Nazianzus, and Macrina by C. Kalvesmaki.
Victor the Moor. Victor the Moor (in Latin: Victor Maurus) (born 3rd century A.D., in Mauretania; died ca. 303 in Milan) was a Christian martyr and is venerated as a saint. Victor, born into a Christian family, was a soldier in the Roman Praetorian Guard.
After he had destroyed some pagan altars, he was arrested, tortured, and killed around 303 A.D. Veneration: Gregory of Tours claimed miracles occurred above his grave; a church was built above the supposed site. His cult was particularly promoted by Saint Ambrose, fourth-century bishop of Milan and numerous churches have been dedicated to him in the city itself and throughout the Diocese of Milan and its neighbours.
St. Nicholas. The true story of Santa Claus begins with Nicholas, who was born during the third century in the village of Patara. At the time the area was Greek and is now on the southern coast of Turkey.
His wealthy parents, who raised him to be a devout Christian, died in an epidemic while Nicholas was still young. Obeying Jesus' words to "sell what you own and give the money to the poor," Nicholas used his whole inheritance to assist the needy, the sick, and the suffering. He dedicated his life to serving God and was made Bishop of Myra while still a young man.
Bishop Nicholas became known throughout the land for his generosity to those in need, his love for children, and his concern for sailors and ships. Under the Roman Emperor Diocletian, who ruthlessly persecuted Christians, Bishop Nicholas suffered for his faith, was exiled and imprisoned.
The prisons were so full of bishops, priests, and deacons, there was no room for the real criminals—murderers, thieves and robbers. After his release, Nicholas attended the Council of Nicaea in A.D. 325.
He died December 6, AD 343 in Myra and was buried in his cathedral church, where a unique relic, called manna, formed in his grave. This liquid substance, said to have healing powers, fostered the growth of devotion to Nicholas.
The anniversary of his death became a day of celebration, St. Nicholas Day, December 6th (December 19 on the Julian Calendar). Through the centuries many stories and legends have been told of St. Nicholas' life and deeds.
These accounts help us understand his extraordinary character and why he is so beloved and revered as protector and helper of those in need. St. Patrick of Ireland is one of the world's most popular saints. Apostle of Ireland, born at Kilpatrick, near Dumbarton, in Scotland, in the year 387; died at Saul, Downpatrick, Ireland, 17 March, 461 A.D. Along with St. Nicholas and St. Valentine, the secular world shares our love of these saints. This is also a day when everyone's Irish. There are many legends and stories of St. Patrick, but this is his story.
Patrick, Ireland, God, Prayer, Love, Prayers, Druids, He
Patrick was born around 385 in Scotland, probably Kilpatrick.
His parents were Calpurnius and Conchessa, who were Romans living in Britian in charge of the colonies.
As a boy of fourteen or so, he was captured during a raiding party and taken to Ireland as a slave to herd and tend sheep.
Ireland at this time was a land of Druids and pagans.
He learned the language and practices of the people who held him.
During his captivity, he turned to God in prayer.
He wrote "The love of God and his fear grew in me more and more, as did the faith, and my soul was rosed, so that, in a single day, I have said as many as a hundred prayers and in the night, nearly the same."
"I prayed in the woods
and on the mountain, even before dawn. I felt no hurt from the snow or ice or rain."
Patrick's captivity lasted until he was twenty, when he escaped after having a dream from God in which he was told to leave Ireland by going to the coast.
There he found some sailors who took him back to Britian, where he reunited with his family.
He had another dream in which the people of Ireland were calling out to him
"We beg you, holy youth, to come and walk among us once more."
He began his studies for the priesthood.
He was ordained by St. Germanus, the Bishop of Auxerre, whom he had
studied under for years.
Later, Patrick was ordained a bishop, and was sent to take the Gospel to Ireland.
He arrived in Ireland March 25, 433 A.D., at Slane.
One legend says that he met a chieftain of one of the tribes, who tried to kill Patrick.
Patrick converted Dichu (the chieftain) after he was unable to move his arm until he became friendly to Patrick.
Patrick began preaching the Gospel throughout Ireland, converting many.
He and his disciples preached and converted thousands and began building churches all over the country.
Kings, their families, and entire kingdoms converted to Christianity when hearing Patrick's message.
Patrick by now had many disciples, among them Beningnus, Auxilius, Iserninus, and Fiaac, (all later canonized as
Patrick preached and converted all of Ireland for 40 years.
He worked many miracles and wrote of his love for God in Confessions.
After years of living in poverty, traveling and enduring much suffering he died March 17, 461.
He died at Saul, where he had built the first church.
Why a shamrock? Patrick used the shamrock to explain the Trinity, and has been associated with him and the Irish since that time.
In His Footsteps: Patrick was a humble, pious, gentle man, whose love and total devotion to and trust in God should be a shining example to each of us.
He feared nothing, not even death, so complete was his trust in God, and of the importance of his mission.